Coronavirus: Facebook, Google ask San Francisco staff to work from home

Facebook said it is strongly recommending all of its Bay area employees and contingent staff to begin working from home.
Facebook said it is strongly recommending all of its Bay area employees and contingent staff to begin working from home.PHOTO: AFP

SAN FRANCISCO (REUTERS) - Social media giant Facebook and Alphabet's Google on Thursday (March 5) recommended that their San Francisco Bay area employees to work from home to minimise the risk of spreading the Covid-19 coronavirus.

Facebook said it is "strongly recommending that all Bay area employees and contingent staff work from home starting Friday."

The decision is "based on the guidance from Santa Clara County on Thursday", Mr Anthony Harrison, Facebook spokesman, said in an emailed statement to Reuters.

Employees and contractors involved in the site's safety and security will continue to work on site, while all the Bay Area events will remain cancelled, according to the statement.

Separately, Google has offered work-from-home option to employees in Bay Area offices , a spokesman told Reuters in an e-mailed statement.

Coronavirus test kits were delivered on Thursday to an ocean liner at sea, as it was barred from returning to port in San Francisco after at least 35 people aboard the vessel developed flu-like symptoms, which has been linked to two other confirmed cases of Covid-19.